by Steven Ertelt
June 13, 2007
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Several leading pro-life advocates say there is no chance they will support Rudy Giuliani for the GOP nomination for president next year because he takes a pro-abortion position. They warn that a Giuliani nomination would doom the Republican Party’s chances in 2008 because it would turn off pro-life voters.
Their stance isn’t surprising as polls have consistently shown that Giuliani loses support with Republican votes because he disagrees with most of them on abortion.
Three leaders of prominent pro-life groups spoke with Politico about their reservations when it comes to Giuliani.
Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention was a strong supporter of President Bush during his 2000 and 2004 presidential campaigns but said he would not vote for Giuliani in the 2008 general election, even though the Democratic nominee will almost assuredly be pro-abortion as well.
"I’m not going to vote for a pro-choice candidate, period," he said, speaking on behalf of himself and not the convention.
Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, was equally strong in his comments about how he would treat Giuliani in the voting booth.
"Speaking as a private citizen, no, no, I could not support (Giuliani)," Perkins told Politico. "The 20 years I’ve been involved in politics, the life issue has been at the very top. How could I turn my back on that?"
He said he would likely support a third-party candidate should Giuliani carry the GOP standard next fall.
Louis Sheldon, the head of the Traditional Values Coalition and is backing former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in the Republican primary, also told the political web site he couldn’t lend his name to Giuliani’s candidacy.
"When I give my support for a candidate, I am giving the green light, if he wins, all the way down the line in terms of so many moral and social issues," said Sheldon. "I’m personally not supporting Giuliani.”
Sheldon would not go as far as Perkins in saying he would vote for a third party candidate — calling such a move a “wasted vote.”
The trio join Focus on the Family president James Dobson and former Republican presidential candidate and pro-life advocate Gary Bauer in opposing Giuliani.
That pro-life leaders would oppose Giuliani is not surprising given the polling data showing grassroots Republicans and pro-life advocates opposing him as well.
A recent Harris Poll finds that the more conservative the Republican the more likely Giuliani’s pro-abortion views are off-putting.
Looking ahead, just one-third (33%) of adults say they would vote for Mayor Giuliani if he was the Republican nominee for President of the United States while 40 percent would not and one-quarter (24%) are not sure.
Looking at specific issues, 26% of adults agree that his positions on issues such as abortion make them unable to vote for him — and the percentage is high enough to make his road to the White House more difficult.
Another 43 percent say his pro-abortion position isn’t a deciding factor and 31 percent are not sure, meaning his stance could still prompt them to oppose his candidacy.
While about one-quarter of adults say Giuliani’s pro-abortion views would prompt them to vote for someone else, this percentage rises to 35 percent when self-identified conservative Republicans examine his views.
That could be a huge factor in early primary states like Iowa and South Carolina where conservative Republicans dominate the elections there.